recognizing the night

angels without bodies
heads with wings
gazing with dismay
upon humanity–

where indeed?
did they come from
will they go?
and who knows

who they are
who we are
and why we are
on opposite sides?

who is this?  who
petitions the heavens
surrounded by sky waves
encased in a floating shell

held by cherubs–
the sun waits
uncertain afraid
while multiple madonnas

hover above
the mission grounds–
what is the mission?
of this line drawn

over and under–
who drew it?
who was first
to deny kinship

to question the connection
between we and they–
is it just a matter
of transposing

the words the sounds?
what prayers must Our Lady
carry past the pleading priests?
over the waves

through the clouds
into the night
where the moon waits
patient and wise

For the earthweal challenge A FEAST OF EARTH FOOLS. Once again, I am uncertain if my answer fulfills the question. But I believe the moon, patroness of lunatics, deserves a seat at earth’s table.

Part of this poem came out of something I wrote about an engraving in the Hispanic Museum celebrating Our Lady of Guadalupe. It was an unhappy scene I thought–even the angels looked distressed. The sun appeared to be attempting to hide. Only the three visions of the Lady seemed to hold any real spiritual essence. It was titled “Recognizing the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe”–clearly what was needed was to recognize the night.

21 thoughts on “recognizing the night

  1. “what prayers must Our Lady
    carry past the pleading priests?”
    feels like an obstacle course or punishing gauntlet to get them to heaven. Clarissa Pinkola-Estes says we belong to different tribes, which fits in with your lunar patroness idea.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Jade. We certainly act tribal, even within what should be our tribe. I wonder how we decide where we belong? I have no idea what my tribe would be, as every group I am part of seems to be splintered.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. For sure we need to recognise the night we are in:

    ‘who was first
    to deny kinship

    to question the connection
    between we and they–’

    This disconnection is a big part of the problem. Wonderful poem and artwork.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree, Kerfe, that the patroness of lunatics deserves a seat at earth’s table. You have not only drawn inspiration from art but also added your own stunning art to the ekphrastic mix. I like the way you structured your poem around a framework of questions, and the shift from dismay to the moon waiting patient and wise.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I think you are are right about the questions and the night. We need to recognize the night to see the day.
    And yes, too, to
    “who was first
    to deny kinship . . .”
    There’s so much in your collage, as well–it also seems full of questions.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Representations of Our Lady are often sad. Even referring to her as The Virgin seen so cold and sterile. Angels reduced to heads, petitions finding their way past obstacles to where? So many questions and there are definitely no answers.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I didn’t know that aspect. I do know that marriage was forced on women with means, heiresses and widows and some with a lot of nerve refused to obey brothers and uncles etc. Often virgins were considered ‘protected’ like priestesses and temple handmaids, but then you get rape as a weapon kicking in—rape the virgins and they’re not virgins anymore so the goddess won’t protect them and theirs. It’s part of the old story of domination.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. I wonder if Our Lady looks sad because we took away her Moon, divested her of it and of our basal lunar knowledge. Like Keith Richards of the Stones used to say, nothing interesting happens where the light is too bright … Thanks for bringin’ it to earthweal!

    Liked by 1 person

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